Before reading Illuminae, the first book in The Illuminae Files trilogy by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff, I seized a friend and made them flip through the pages. Before even thinking about the words delivered on the page, I was sucked in by the formatting and I had to show someone else. What we were seeing was words swirling off across the page, emulating fighter jets in flight and page upon page of photos that break your heart when you learn what they mean. Personally, I loved how words were sometimes used to create pictures. But never fear there is also plenty of normal-ish text to read (though some is redacted, including all swear words − to which you’ll find yourself trying to fill in the blanks and which somehow gives the missing words more power).
Which gets us to the actual story.
The novel pursues two sassy teens and one sassier and psychotic A.I. (artificial intelligence), through the destruction of a planet and the escape of survivors on crippled spaceships while being chased through space by an enemy set on destroying them. Add a rabid, rapidly spreading plague, children being sent into battle and a crazy A.I. who has a little bit too much of the I. for the rest of the characters good (or safety), and you’ll begin to understand how tense this book is.
It has a bit of everything in it, science, computers, romance, gore, action, politics and war. The real selling point is that it just never stops. Just when you think it can’t get more tense it does and just when you think your favourite character is safe, all hopes will be swiftly dashed (or will they?).
It’s an immensely entertaining read and though it is categorised as young adult fiction, the adults I know who have read it have loved it too – though you’ll think they’re insane when you see them reading it upside down…and sideways.
Unless you are a sci-fi hating person without a sense of humour (you poor bastard), you won’t regret picking up this (brick of a) book - or its audio alternative, which, with a cast of forty, I hear is equally amazing – and even creepier.
Cover Reveal for Gemina (The Illuminae Files 2)
The cover for the second book in the series, Gemina has been officially revealed to the world. Check it out!
From bestselling author duo Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff comes the second edge-of-your-seat installment in the trilogy that reviewers are calling “stylistically mesmerizing” and “out-of-this-world-awesome.”
You can find the full scoop on Gemina, straight from the authors' mouths, at Happy Ever After on USA Today.
Gemina will be available in October 2016. We can't wait.